In Australia the brush-tailed rock-wallaby (Petrogale penicillata) is the subject of a national recovery plan, and several sites have been selected for reintroductions. Condition of wild populations and individual animals can be monitored using hematologic and serum biochemistry analytes, and hematologic variables have been correlated with postrelease survival in other species. Prior to such monitoring, reference values for blood variables are required, but these data have not been available for the brush-tailed rock-wallaby. During four trapping periods from November 2004 to August 2005, 116 blood samples were collected from 44 brush-tailed rock-wallabies in a wild colony in southeast Queensland. Some variables varied with sex, age, method of restraint, lactation demands, and trapping period. After partitioning, when required, reference ranges for hematology and serum biochemistry variables were established. This study provides the most comprehensive serum biochemistry reference range for any macropodid marsupial yet published.
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Vol. 44 • No. 2